Reza Kahlili (an alias) recently wrote the book, A Time To Betray, a portrayal of his double life as a Revolutionary Guard member and CIA Agent. Although it is impossible to independently verify his recounting of all the events and facts, it is a fascinating read about the despotic Iranian regime. The best part of the book is when he discusses his personal experiences and reactions to the brutal Iranian government from its inception in 1979 through today. NewsRealBlog talked with the author about his feelings, past and present, regarding the radicalized extremist Iranian system.
NRB: You had a very interesting comment in the book about why September 11th happened. You said, “Being soft on bin Laden emboldened him to commit a heinous act.” Can you explain what you meant?
Reza: Al Qaeda started with small jobs and they grew bigger and bigger. America took no action which made bin Laden believe he was untouchable. This same thing is happening with Iran.
NRB: Should America have done more to help the protestors?
Reza: The US Government lost an opportunity. There was a deafening silence. The Iranians want nothing more than freedom and democracy. I feel the protestors were betrayed by the West.
NRB: Some former CIA officials disagree with you. They feel if the US became more involved then the Iranian government would have argued that the US Government is meddling in their internal affairs and killed more protestors. Can you comment?
Reza: It is an excuse that not being vocal was to ensure the protestors safety. That is just not true. Every day the Iranian Government propagandizes against the West. They have sold the idea that if you take any drastic measures or voice harsh criticism the moderates in Iran will be weakened.
NRB: What should be done to help the opposition?
Reza: Let me first say that it is totally unacceptable and undoable to invade Iran. Any attempt at an invasion would unite everybody. Sanctions will work when the US and the European countries stop ALL diplomatic and trade relations with Iran. If that happened, the Iranian Government’s infrastructure would CRACK.
NRB: Do you want to see the Shah’s son regain power?
Reza: Not now. I don’t want to see too much power in one individual. I want a government established that is a copy cat of the US with checks and balances.
NRB: Should we try to contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions?
Reza: The question is can we deal with a nuclear armed Iran? To allow it would be a great mistake. If Iran becomes nuclear they will take the world hostage. Remember they are in the center of the most important area for energy. No one understands the philosophy of this regime.
NRB: Do you think President Obama should negotiate with the Iranians?
Reza: He is making the same mistake as every other administration. No way can you ever trust them. It is a cat and mouse game. Here’s what they do: Ahmadinejad comes out and says the most outrageous things. Then others in the regime come out and provide some hope to keep you in a state of confusion. Take for example what happened in Geneva in October (Iran agreed in talks with the United States and other major powers to open its newly revealed uranium enrichment plant near Qum to international inspection.) Everyone was jubilant that we would have an agreement, which never happened. They are deceived by the leadership in Tehran.
NRB: What would you like to say to the American people?
Reza: I betrayed my country for a reason, to bring freedom to my people and end this ruthless regime.